[Penang, Malaysia] Beef noodles at Cafe 2828, Perak Road

The beef noodle stall at Cafe 2828 serves up the best rendition of the Teochew beef koay teow noodle dish, a close cousin of the Vietnamese phở bò, that I’d tried in town.
Personally, I’d always preferred the Teochew version for its lighter taste, as compared to the phở bò’s more full-bodied beefy flavour.

We requested for the koay teow flat rice noodles to be served separately from the soup, as we rather liked the rice simply dressed in garlic-shallot oil:

The accompanying beef soup was chockful of ingredients: slices of beef shin, beef meatballs and beef tendon. Chopped fresh coriander leaves are sprinkled on top, plu sgolden-fried chopped garlic.

Beef tendon (my fave!) and beef meatball (another fave!).

Beef shin, much favoured for this dish, as the dish requires long, slow-boiling of the meat to bring out the deep flavours.

Fabulous broth, though - it’s less greasy than those from other good beef noodle places around town, and the savoury, yet light flavours were simply spot-on.

Penang Famous Koay Teow Soup, Cafe 2828
56-K Perak Road (near the intersection with Lim Khoon Huat Road)
Taman Lalulintas, 10450 George Town, Penang
Tel: +60124508177
Opening hours: 10.30am to 3pm, Tue to Sun. Closed on Mondays.


Love this. Noodles on the side like that is also good.

No option for congealed pig’s blood? I love tendon, marrow and cartilage.

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No, I’d have liked that, too.

But Penang street food has quite a strict set of codes on what can or cannot go into certain dishes, for e.g. we can have duck’s blood in “koay teow th’ng”, which comes in pork, chicken or duck broth - each hawker will do only one style, so one needs to know where to go: Malay Street or Cecil Market for the duck-meat “koay teow th’ng”, Clarke Street for chicken-meat “koay teow th’ng”, One Corner Cafe @ Jalan Bawasah for pork “koay teow th’ng”, etc… But for all types, it is acceptable to add duck’s blood pudding, but never ever pig’s blood pudding.

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Oh, wow. There’s a system. I thought congealed pig’s and duck’s blood pudding was interchangeable.

Well, since I like everything I’ll make big round eating at all the good stalls.

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Oh no, a very distinct difference between the two - especially when it comes to the texture: pig’s blood pudding will be firm like agar-agar, and with clean lines when cut into cubes, whereas duck’s blood is softer in appearance, hardly holding its shape and have a slight toothsome bite to it.

Compare the two types here:

  1. Chung Hwa Curry Mee which uses pig’s blood cubes:

  2. Duck’s Blood Curry Mee on Burmah Road - you can see the “softer” appearance of the duck’s blood there, almost like a blob.

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Indeed. Now that you’ve explained it the difference is clear.

I like both, but now duck’s blood possible more. I prefer the texture of duck’s blood.

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Back to Cafe 2828 for Sunday morning brunch - its Teochew "gu bak koay teow" or beef soup with koay teow noodles.

Penang has two famous Teochew "gu bak koay teow" spots which started in the 1960s:
(1) Victoria Street Gu Bak Koay Teow by Kang Chew Eam, and
(2) Acheen Street Gu Bak Koay Teow by his brother Kang Chew See.
Their father had emigrated to Penang from Swatow, China, after World War II.

In recent years, Kang Chew Eam’s son, Kang Kheng Cheng, has moved into Sri Weld foodcourt to operate a stall, whereas Kang Chew See’s sons moved first into Lam Ah kopitiam, and subsequently to OO White Coffee on Carnarvon Street, where it’s currently run by his grand-daughter, Ms Loo Seow Theng aka ST Loo.

This popular stall at Cafe 2828 on Perak Road is run by Kang Seok Yin, a grand-daughter of elder brother, Kang Chew Eam. Her husband cooks whilst she takes the orders and serves.


Vietnam’s national soup Pho, meet your match! Challenge excepted!

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Separated at birth!

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Oh, my! :star_struck:

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